Faith Daily | 7 January 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p 479
by the leading of a star
you manifested your only-begotten Son to the Gentiles:
mercifully grant, that we, who know you now by faith,
may after this life be led to the vision
of your glorious Godhead;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Luke 5: 12-16
12 Once, when he was in one of the cities, there was a man covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he bowed with his face to the ground and begged him, ‘Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.’ 13Then Jesus stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, ‘I do choose. Be made clean.’ Immediately the leprosy left him. 14And he ordered him to tell no one. ‘Go’, he said, ‘and show yourself to the priest, and, as Moses commanded, make an offering for your cleansing, for a testimony to them.’ 15But now more than ever the word about Jesus* spread abroad; many crowds would gather to hear him and to be cured of their diseases. 16But he would withdraw to deserted places and pray.
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Anne MacRonald
I find this reading profoundly moving. After more than 2000 years we as human beings still repel and marginalize others who for some reason are “not normal “either physically or mentally.
Jesus was concerned with more than bodily healing. He was aware of the helplessness and humiliation of those rejected by society.
The core of his life was prayer. At the times of struggle and temptation Jesus went to a quiet place to pray. His ministry needed the support and encouragement of his father. With us prayer enhances our family life, friendships, love and ministry for others.
When Jesus came to the leper as his followers drew back he looked into the mans eyes . And for the first time in many years the leper saw not loathing, fear and rejection but concern, sympathy and love.
In our modern world are many examples of the power of love and acceptance.
At the start of the Aids epidemic I still have a clear picture of the late Princess Diana. She sat with many Aids victims, made eye contact with them, touched and often hugged them. I believe that simple act made a huge difference to the feeling of rejection.
I have had some connection with the Mercy ships who visit the poorest parts of Africa to do essential surgery. Many of the patients are young women who have been abused and damaged during childbirth causing chronic incontinence and rejection by their family. They live on the outer areas of the villages and are considered unclean especially by their husbands who are responsible for the damage.
The Mercy Ship staff treat them with acceptance , love and compassion .The surgery complete they stay to recover ,communicate with others and eventually go back to villages well and accepted.
Mental illness still has a stigma attached to it and many people hide their problem for fear of rejection . How different their life could be if they were embraced and supported.
May we support and care for all people on their life journey without judgement or criticism.
FINAL PRAYER: written by Rev. Abi, and posted on her Long and Winding Road blog
Lord we ask you for your care and healing touch for those who are sick. We ask for your compassion on those who are suffering in our world. We ask for you comfort for those who are grieving. We thank you for your daily tender mercies. We thank you for your daily love. We thank you for your daily grace. We call upon you Lord to empower us
as we declare who you are to a world who needs you. We call upon you Lord to inspire us
as we seek to inspire others. We call upon you Lord to strengthen us
in our own weakness. We ask all this in your Son’s name, Amen.